The entire self-care industry seems to have been given a bad rap lately, with people encouraging us to spend outrageous money on things like gold face masks, weekly massages (that aren't medically necessary), or going on shopping sprees all in the effort to "treat yourself."
Alright, perhaps I'm being a bit pessimistic here, but self-care to me has always been a daily practice, in which I take care of my mental and physical health -- not a luxury "day out." It's an absolute necessity because without either of those things, I don't feel as ready to be there for work and my family.
However, if you're like me, you may feel a little bit of guilt spending time and money on yourself. One way that may help is to look at money you can set aside specifically for self-care.
Take your FSA for example. Even with the best of intentions, sometimes you'll have money sitting in the account that you need to use up or else it'll be lost forever. In this case, why not look for self-care products that are both medically necessary (i.e. helpful for your physical health) and give you an opportunity to use up your FSA funds?
Personally, I like to keep a wish list for such occasions. Here are just a few of the items I'd love to buy if I had FSA funds I really needed to use up.
Remote-powered foot circulator
I'm a sucker for tools that relax stiff muscles. With a young kid to take care of and standing on my feet most days when I'm attending conferences, my legs get sore real fast.
I'd love to get this remote-powered foot circulator so I can just turn it on, sit back and relax while eliminating my pain. The product claims to help increase blood circulation and reduces swollen feet too, which sounds awesome if I need to get up the next day and face another hectic work schedule
Full-on migraine relief
Loud noises and bright lights tend to give me headaches, and unfortunately my son's toys seem to be the noisiest and brightest when I'm the most stressed. I'd love to find a drug-free solution to headaches so I can lie back and just let go.
This looks pretty neat since you get a head and eye wrap and can be used hot or cold, which is lovely because it really depends on what kind of headache or migraine you have as to what you need.
Acupressure mat set (don't forget the pillow)
I'm a total sucker for anything purple and alternative medicine. My grandfather was actually a traditional Chinese doctor so when I saw this mat, it was totally up my alley. The idea is that you lay on this mat that uses acupressure points to relieve pain. I want it because I tend to have a lot of neck and shoulder pain.
Next-level lip balm
Nobody can blame a person for wanting to look nice, right? But more importantly, I want to look nice while getting the necessary sun protection I need.
SPF lip balm is something I love because it offers that level of protection -- something I definitely need since my family spends a ton of time outdoors. But it also looks pretty good, too! This tinted lip balm offers a few colors to choose from -- but I'm digging on the one called "Summer Crush" right now.
From the looks of it, it's also got SPF 30 and a bunch of non-toxic ingredients, so it's good for your health and the environment.
All-in-one lip treatment that protects with broad-spectrum UVA/UVB protection.
Whether you budget week-to-week, or plan to use your FSA for bigger things, our weekly Real Money column will help you maximize your flex spending dollars. Look for it every Tuesday, exclusively on the FSAstore.com Learning Center. And for the latest info about your health and financial wellness, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.